RE: [asa] Dawkins new book (more on morals?)

From: Ted Davis <>
Date: Fri Oct 23 2009 - 13:15:17 EDT

Bernie, this will have to be my last post today and probably for a few days, owing to family commitments. Instead of explaining my logic, I'll let Dawkins speak for himself; this is what I meant by the type of atheism he represents (as vs other types). The following comes from the Time magazine debate between Dawkins and Francis Collins (who opens his part, incidentally, by flatly denying that Gould's NOMA model applies to him):

COLLINS: For you to argue that our noblest acts are a misfiring of Darwinian behavior does not do justice to the sense we all have about the absolutes that are involved here of good and evil. Evolution may explain some features of the moral law, but it can't explain why it should have any real significance. If it is solely an evolutionary convenience, there is really no such thing as good or evil. But for me, it is much more than that. The moral law is a reason to think of God as plausible--not just a God who sets the universe in motion but a God who cares about human beings, because we seem uniquely amongst creatures on the planet to have this far-developed sense of morality. What you've said implies that outside of the human mind, tuned by evolutionary processes, good and evil have no meaning. Do you agree with that?

DAWKINS: Even the question you're asking has no meaning to me. Good and evil--I don't believe that there is hanging out there, anywhere, something called good and something called evil. I think that there are good things that happen and bad things that happen.

COLLINS: I think that is a fundamental difference between us. I'm glad we identified it.

The whole exchange is at,9171,1555132-8,00.html.

Gotta go, Bernie, my best to you.


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Received on Fri Oct 23 13:15:57 2009

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